The City of Jericho

Joshua 2:1
And Joshua the son of Nun sent out of Shittim two men to spy secretly, saying, Go view the land, even Jericho. And they went, and came into an harlot’s hose, named Rahab, and lodged there.

Hebrew ‘Yerechow or Yerichow,’ from yareach, the moon or new moon.

It was so-called because of the crescent-like plain in which it stood – one formed by an amphitheatre of hills surrounding it.

Some think the name is derived from ‘ruwach’, meaning smell or fragrance, and believe it is appropriate because of many balsam and palm trees in the city [Dt. 34:3].

One of the oldest cities in the Holy Land, it was located about 18 or 20 miles from Jerusalem and about 4 miles from Jordan.

Nothing is said of the city except to mention its existence [west of Jordan] in 12 references up to this point [Num. 22:1; 26:3, 63; 31:12; 33;48, 50; 34;15; 35:1; 36:13; Dt. 32:49; 34:1-3].

It is named 29 times in Joshua and only 22 other times in all Scripture after this.

Its fall and the curse upon the man who would build it are recorded in 6:1-26; Heb. 11:30.

It was rebuilt by Heil [1 Ki. 16:34].

Elijah and Elisha both passed it when they made Jordan dry [2 Ki. 24:18].

Jedekiah, last king of Judah, was captured there [2 Ki. 25:5; Jer. 39:5; 52:8].

Several interesting events took place at Jericho during the ministry of Jesus [Matt. 20:29; Mk. 10:46; Lk. 10:30; 18:35; 19:1].

Under the Romans it was a royal residence, Herod the great died there. It was destroyed and rebuilt after this several times.

A small, dirty village of about 200 people is now on the old ruins.

– Dake Annotated Reference Bible: page 264

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